Monday, April 13, 2009

NEBRASKA NEWS: TB Found in Captive Elk / Fallow Deer Herd

According to Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) State Veterinarian Dr. Dennis Hughes, NDA and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) veterinarians have discovered a herd of captive elk and fallow deer in the Knox County area that have tested positive for Tuberculosis (TB). NDA has authority over captive cervid herds in the state.

According to Dr. Hughes, NDA and USDA are currently in the process of working with the producer who has been cooperating with the two agencies. The herd, which is currently under quarantine, is eligible for depopulation and indemnification in accordance with USDA guidelines.

"The area where these animals are kept is fairly remote and there is no direct contact with any livestock," said Dr. Hughes. "NDA is coordinating with the Nebraska Game and Parks authorities on the situation, and they will be taking appropriate next steps regarding the wild cervid population in the area."

TB is a slow, progressive disease and is difficult to diagnose in the early stages; however, as the disease progresses animals can exhibit emaciation, lethargy, weakness, anorexia, low-grade fever and pneumonia with a chronic, moist cough.

Source: Nebraska Dept. Agriculture

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